May 15, 2009, Newsletter Issue #166: Traditional Gifts

Tip of the Week

Traditionally, bachelorette gifts are relatively small and token. A bride can expect her friends to cover the cost of her bachelorette party, including paying for any entertainment (usually in the form of a male stripper) and beverages. Friends generally give the bachelorette something 'for the bottom drawer' – as it was known in the past – meaning a small gift of lingerie or nightwear, or house items needed to help her in her married life.

Contrary to popular belief, the traditional purpose of a bachelorette party or hen's night is to share the bride's joy in getting married and to help her prepare for marriage. Bachelorette gifts follow this aim. Bridesmaids, maids of honor and friends follow through with activities originally intended to frighten away any evil spirits attracted by the bride's happiness, doing things such as noisemaking with pots and pans through the streets, or daubing the bride with flour and soot to promote health and happiness in the home.

These days, the tradition of frightening away spirits has fallen to the way side, but friends still give gifts that help the bride prepare for marriage.

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